Browsing Tag

20th Century Fox

by Daniel Gorman Film Kicking the Canon

Independence Day | Roland Emmerich

The summer of 1996 saw the release of three huge blockbusters that would in one way or another influence the next 20 odd years of Hollywood filmmaking. Twister revived the moribund eco-disaster picture, while Mission: Impossible gave global superstar Tom Cruise his very own (ongoing) action franchise. The…

July 4, 2020
by Daniel Gorman Film Kicking the Canon

Alien | Ridley Scott

…Casablanca is not just one film. It is many films, an anthology. Made haphazardly, it probably made itself, if not actually against the will of its authors and actors, then at least beyond their control. And this is the reason it works, in spite of…

January 23, 2020
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

Ford v Ferrari | James Mangold

Though he didn’t invent it, James Mangold so perfected the Hollywood biopic/true story template with Walk the Line that they made a beat-for-beat parody of it in Walk Hard, so he might as well have. In Ford v Ferrari, he aims that factory efficiency…

November 14, 2019
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

Stuber | Michael Dowse

Another in a long line of action comedies made by people who can’t shoot action, Michael Dowse’s Stuber is frequently funny and buoyed by two capable leads, but it fails to toy with the tropes in the buddy film sandbox, and is not particularly…

July 15, 2019
by Lawrence Garcia Film Kicking the Canon

All That Jazz | Bob Fosse

“This is the feverish, painful expression of a man who lives in mortal fear of his own mediocrity,” concludes Dave Kehr’s negative Chicago Reader review of All That Jazz, Bob Fosse’s penultimate directorial feature. And it certainly is — that’s what makes it so glorious.…

January 19, 2019
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

Widows | Steve McQueen

After celebrated prestige pictures like Shame and 12 Years a Slave, you’d be forgiven for expecting something less disreputable from Steve McQueen than Widows. But McQueen’s normal tendencies toward making “important” work (not to mention his gorgeous, tactile images) add essential texture to what’s basically a rambunctious…

November 16, 2018
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

The Predator | Shane Black

The stripped-down premise and formal exactitude of John McTiernan’s 1987 Predator are precisely not present in Shane Black’s The Predator, the latest attempt to drag-out and elaborate on a franchise that shouldn’t be burdened by much more than ‘scary monster kills people.’ This new installment collapses under the weight…

September 14, 2018
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

Deadpool 2 | David Leitch

Did you like the first Deadpool? Its constant allegedly clever meta-references? The look-how-edgy-this-is shock humor? The graphic violence? Deadpool 2 has more of those things, so you will enjoy this one too. Although, this time, Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) is depressed for various spoilery reasons and wants to…

May 17, 2018
by Matt Lynch Film

Joy | David O. Russell

Joy begins with an on-screen dedication to “daring women” and a scene from a hypothetical cheesy soap opera in which two women argue about the men in their lives, the love that they want, and the power that they deserve. It’s a surreal introduction…

December 8, 2015
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

The Revenant | Alejandro González Iñárritu

Combining what some have called his propensity for “arthouse miserablism” in films like Babel or Biutiful with a newfound fetish for conspicuous formal audacity (see Birdman’s much-discussed faux single take), Alejandro González Iñárritu’s The Revenant is a simultaneously uneven and thrilling combination of grisly…

December 4, 2015
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